Review: Schiit Audio Asgard 2

As a new convert to higher-end audio gear, I was curious about headphone pre-amps and DACs. While I haven’t yet dropped $5,000 on a set of speaker cables, I am willing to give some things a try.

My first purchase? An Asgard 2 from Schiit Audio. First introduced in 2013, this headphone amp and pre-amp does one thing and does it well: you plug in your regular outputs – be they a computer or audio system or whatever – and listen to the sound on headphones. A pair of RCA outputs on the back let you pump the sound into powered speakers and a simple switch sets the gain – either 6db or 18db.

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Master & Dynamic’s MW07 earbuds are surprisingly good

I like to be surprised. When I first used the Sony WH-1000XM3 I was pleasantly surprised to the point of replacement, deciding that Bose would no longer get my money. Now Master & Dynamic, a higher end audio manufacturer, might be prying the AirPods out of my oddly-shaped skull.

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Can Microsoft deliver where Google failed?

Remember Pixel buds? Google had this plan to sell earbuds that worked with Android to do real-time translation and Google Assistant. Reviews weren’t great. They had problems pairing, problems charging, and generally didn’t add to the experience, the way Siri via Apple AirPods seems to. Can Microsoft get wireless headphones right?

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Introducing the Vissles 2-in-1 Music Pill

If you’re on the hunt for a new pair of wireless earbuds, you certainly are not spoiled for choice, in a variety of styles and price points. The same could be said for bluetooth speakers – a lot of choice. Somehow, no one has thought of combining those two things (that I’ve seen) until Vissiles came along, with their new device launching in October.

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Sounds like Audio-Technica has some nice wireless headphones on the way

While we weren’t over at IFA for all of the fun news and hands-on, there were plenty of venerable outfits over there checking out all the stuff. One item in particular caught my eye, a sub-$100 pair of wireless headphones from Audio-Technica that Engadget played around with.

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Bose announces Portable Home Speaker

Bose has announced a new wireless device, the Portable Home Speaker, aimed at heading off Sonos and other Bluetooth devices off at the pass. The $349 device supports Google Assistant, Alexa, AirPlay, and Spotify. You can also connect to it via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

The speaker is 7.5 inches tall and is inside an aluminum case with solid water resistance. You can charge it on a dock or via USB-C. It also works with other Bose speakers, allowing you to create a multi-room system like Sonos.

Looking to pick one up? You’ll have to wait until September 19 to get it in black or silver.

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